The last straw: Either true depiction of the Hungarian Holocaust or Jewish boycott

The fallout from Sándor Szakály’s outrageous comments on the Kamenets-Podolskii mass murder of deportees delivered to German-occupied Ukraine is intensifying in Hungary. Instead of calling it what it was, the first atrocity in the Hungarian Holocaust, Szakály called it “a police action against aliens.” It seems that this was the last straw for Mazsihisz, the organization that represents non-Orthodox Jewish religious communities.

An exceptionally strongly worded statement appeared on Mazsihisz’s website this morning. Here is a translation of this very important document. We must keep in mind that in the past Mazsihisz was relatively inactive and avoided serious confrontations with the Hungarian government. The fact that such a statement was released by Mazsihisz shows how strained relations between the Orbán government and the Jewish communities have become in the last four years.

* * *

MAZSIHISZ DEMANDS THE RESIGNATION OF SÁNDOR SZAKÁLY

The leadership of Mazsihisz is aghast and finds incomprehensible the relativization of the Holocaust by the “Veritas” Institute established by the Hungarian government. The director of the “Veritas” Institute, Sándor Szakály, called the deportation of Kamenets-Podolskii, the first mass murder of the Hungarian Holocaust, “a police action against aliens.” After the failure of his past efforts at falsifying history, we expect him to resign from his position.

The leadership of Mazsihisz calls on all politicians to refrain from using the 70th anniversary of the Hungarian Holocaust as an element in the electoral campaign and asks all concerned to refrain from rewriting our past. If the government of Hungary is serious about facing the true history of the Holocaust,  it should immediately put an end to the disrespectful behavior that is ruinous for the credibility of the memorial year of 2014.

Because of the lack of information about the ideology of the new Holocaust Center at Józsefváros, because of what transpired at the Horthy Conference at the House of Terror, because of the falsification of history in the series “Lifesaving Stories” on Magyar Rádió, because of the erection of the [German occupation] memorial on Szabadság tér, and because of the statements of the director of the “Veritas” Institute, Mazsihisz is seriously contemplating refraining from participation in the events of the Holocaust Year. Moreover, we will make use of the grant we received from the Civil Grant Fund only if there is a change in the direction of the whole project.

We call everybody’s attention to the words of Sándor Márai: “We cannot excuse, we cannot explain what happened, but we can admit it and can tell it.  This will be the duty of this generation.”

* * *

András Heisler, president of Mazsihisz

András Heisler, president of Mazsihisz

Since then Szakály was invited by Antónia Mészáros of ATV for a chat on her program. He started out on a high horse and tried to prove the correctness of his interpretation by reading passages from Randolph L. Braham’s work on the Hungarian Holocaust. Naturally, since the appearance of that monumental work several books and articles have appeared on the subject. Szakály is either unfamiliar with this research or purposely ignored it. By the end of the conversation, however, he was less sure of his views and admitted that perhaps he was wrong. But that is not a political issue, he claimed, but differences of opinion within the profession. Initially he categorically announced that he has no intention of resigning, but by the end he was quite contrite. Obviously he realized the precariousness of his situation.

Mazsihisz’s quasi ultimatum pushes Viktor Orbán into a corner. He either has to sack Szakály, force Mária Schmidt to allow a dialogue with the Jewish community concerning the new Holocaust Center, and give up the idea of erecting a monument to the German occupation which is an important part of the myth he wants to create about the innocence of Hungarians in the Holocaust, or he loses the support of the Hungarian and international Jewry which he seems to find very important. Perhaps he thinks that key members of the American Jewish community will rush to his aid and convince the American government that the current Hungarian government is democratic and especially sensitive when it comes to anti-Semitism. I doubt, however, that such an intervention on Viktor Orbán’s behalf, even if it materialized, could counterbalance, for example, Orbán’s “strategic alliance” with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

We will see what will happen. One thing is sure: the leadership of Mazsihisz is not exaggerating. A wholesale falsification of history has been under way for some time. On all fronts and not just the Holocaust. Lately, for instance, MTV launched a series on the late 1980s and the regime change. The job was given to someone who is not qualified, and the first two segments were apparently crawling with factual errors. And, of course, with revisionist history. On Duna TV there is another questionable historical series called “Heritage.” Put it this way, the number of programs dealing with history is far too high and therefore highly suspicious. One wishes that politicians would leave history alone. We would all be much better off.

58 comments

  1. Shed a tear for Duna TV: they used to have the loveliest interludes with winter scenes and gorgeous music.

    Stupidity, delusions, and lying eventually bring only one harvest–sadness.

  2. Dear Eva,

    As you can see from the planned memorial with Reich eagle, Orban will not back down.

    Putin or Obama could care less about anti-Semitism in general, and Fidesz’s in particular.

  3. By the way, United States should see the Paks II treaty as Russia’s first steps to invasion of Europe.

    Together with the terrorists threat in Sochi, the US and the EU should give a travel warning against travel to Russia…as a first step; to be followed, after following closely the next developments, by other steps specifically on Russian ‘aggression’ into an EU country.

  4. @petofi

    Iran is building its empire through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Does the Obama administration care?

    THanks to fracking, the US does not need the Middle East oil for a while, so their concept is the old “splendid isolation”.

  5. As all Jewish Hungarians I happen to know will not vote for Orbán – and he probably knows it – Orbán will just shrug his shoulders. So far he has not sent anyone packing for incompetence – only for rivalry or lack of loyalty.

    I can’t see American Jewry rushing to Orbán’s rescue either. Why should they? Obama’s Israel policy is probably unsettling enough, and as they are well informed, they will know that Orbán’s status as persona non grata in Washington hasn’t changed since the days of Dubbya.

    Furthermore, for the Hungarian population at large Putin is far away and the promise of cheaper electricity is luring. They either don’t understand the potential ramifications or they don’t care.

    What remains is the remarkable fact that MAZSIHISZ has finally piped up. And I hope they will stick to their guns!

  6. The sad fact is that Szakály actually seemed to be a reasonable guy on ATV, and was thoroughly surprised at some of the fact cited at him. I think he honestly believed that there was some misunderstanding about what really happened. I find it an honorable thing to be able to revise your opinion in face of new facts you learn but in this case not knowing those facts to begin with implies such blatant ignorance and incompetence that he should never have gotten a degree in history let alone a complete institute under himself. Once again WTF Hungary?

    (By the way he reminded me of that family association guy with Olga Kálmán, who totally fell apart admitting that their proposal was idiotic and worthless)

  7. Orban and his people have been systematically pushing back, see the incomplete list of Mazsihisz, on what they consider as Jewish ideology.

    These Fideszniks think that whatever we think about history now has been written by ‘Jews’ (ie. Jewish Hungarian historians according to these Fidesz loyal ‘intellectuals’), so they think it is high time to correct the situation.

    Szakaly, Schmidt and their friends have been strategically and for many years marching forward to take over the symbolic and cultural discourse re the 20th century.

    In addition, many of these historical discourses have clear current political overtones and purposes. These discourses thus reinforce each other, so the right-wing gets more for their buck. For instance there are at least 100 if not more Trianon statues all over Hungary, which both serve to emphasize the most important and defining historical moment for the right-wing and serve current right-wing ideologies.

    Obviously, the left, yet again, could not counter the symbolic power of these historical discourses with anything. Just as on other fields, the left has been watching events take place without doing anything. The left had not idea what to do, but I also contend, it did not even realize what has been happening, how deep and comprehensive Fidesz’ efforts were (supported by Jobbik of course, as we see from the joint TV programs and wholesale cooperation in the provincial towns) .

    What is unfolding is a complex situation and is a result of many processes, but the left’s indifference and silence surely contributed to the situation. And note that Mazsihisz’ only now raised its voice, after so many signs — though it is not surprising, as their operations are entirely dependent on the generosity of the government.

    Ironically, I remember having read an article with a rabbi, perhaps in 2006, just before the elections, in which he said that he was ambivalent about the upcoming elections, because the right wing governments would give much more to Jewish causes, obviously this is how they purchase the silent assent of the Jewish community to the rewriting of history, which strategy worked splendidly. I actually think that this contention has been proven right by the current government again.

    I do believe that Fidesz’ relentless push on the symbolic discourse is at least a sign/result of the failures of the left as it is of own successful strategic agressiveness.

  8. tappanch :
    @petofi
    Iran is building its empire through Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. Does the Obama administration care?
    THanks to fracking, the US does not need the Middle East oil for a while, so their concept is the old “splendid isolation”.

    Obama is a totally lost cause as far as foreign affairs is concerned (and his domestic politics
    don’t shine, either)
    Proofs:
    a) Appointing Hillary
    b) Allowing Hillary’s asinine “reset” with the Russians
    c) Bending to Russian threats re missile deployment in Europe…etc.etc.

    Luckily, the Democrats don’t have a reasonable candidate for the next Presidential elections,
    and the Republican soldier may yet succeed. I don’t think Putin will go eye-ball to eye-ball with him-

  9. On the positive side: Better late than never. (for the MAZSHISZ)
    On the negative side: The majority of the Hungarian people are slow in rationalizing what is happening around them, don’t care much about the correctness of history and scared of their Government. A fast a furious attack on them by even a vile and semi-educated dictator and his sordid scum of school friends, chums and relatives which is the Hungarian Cesspool of Government today robbed the country of its name (Köztársaság) Constitution and the people of their basic rights, not to mention their private retirement savings. George Santayana Spanish born American philosopher, poet and writer once said; “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
    In my opinion, Hungary did not progress nearly as fast as other European, Asian and African countries in the past 150 years, because of repeating their huge mistakes. The people did not close the cultural and moral gap between Western Europe and themselves, and in times like this under a Mafia “Government” they become more unprincipled, dishonest, dishonorable, even stupid. Hungary is like a seesaw, the quality of the society goes up and down, but not ahead.

  10. gybognarjr :
    In my opinion, Hungary did not progress nearly as fast as other European, Asian and African countries in the past 150 years, because of repeating their huge mistakes. The people did not close the cultural and moral gap between Western Europe and themselves, and in times like this under a Mafia “Government” they become more unprincipled, dishonest, dishonorable, even stupid. Hungary is like a seesaw, the quality of the society goes up and down, but not ahead.

    I wonder what else can one expect from a culture, where even having fun is done while crying, and the tears are not tears of joy (sirva vigad a magyar)?

  11. “or he loses the support of the Hungarian and international Jewry which he seems to find very important. ”

    Éva, do you think that Orban ever had their support to begin with? I mean sure he would love to have it, but did he ever have it? I think its absurd to think that he had any kind of support, that he can now lose.

    I predict that MAZSIHISZ sealed the issue, Szakály will remain in his position with 100% certainty.

    If we were not right before an election I would say Mazsihisz’s word carries a lot of weight and has 50% chance of removing Szakály. If the date were 2015 january then yes. But not right before an election.

    The electorate does not care about obscure historical facts, 0.1% of the population even knows what Kamanec Podolsk is, or even less. How they would interpret this is is a simple sign of weakness: there is a demand, the government accepts the demand, therefore the government is weak. It is not governing, but simply following demands.

    If it were not an election campaign then the voters wouldn’t matter as much and effectively Mazsihisz or other organizations could achieve things by simply demanding them. Remember the “give gas” demonstration? It wasn’t an election year, Mazsihisz said it should be banned, three days later it was banned. Then of course TASZ and others said that this banning was illegal to begin with but thats another story.

  12. “The deportation of ethnic Germans from Hungary 68 years ago was an irreparable loss for the entire nation, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said at a commemoration on Sunday.
    Orban rejected punishment based on the notion of collective crime, which in this case was speaking the same language as the members of the sinful regime.He said Hungary needs to adopt a “culture of remembering” in connection with all evil and spiteful deeds.”

    http://www.politics.hu/20140120/deportation-of-germans-in-1946-irreparable-loss-for-nation-says-orban/

  13. @Ovidiu

    They were both collective punishments.
    The Jews were punished for what?

    But the extermination of 70% of the Jews of Hungary is NOT the same as the expulsion of 39% of the ethnic Germans into Germany (3/4 of them settled in the American zone, 1/4 in the Soviet Zone)

    The expelled Germans continued to live, had children and grandchildren

  14. @tappanch–

    “The expelled Germans continued to live, had children and grandchildren”

    “After the war a total of at least 12 million German were expelled from east-central Europe…estimate of deaths due to the flight and expulsions has stood at 2.2 million for several decades, recent analysis has led some historians to the conclusion that the actual number was much lower – in the range of 500,000 to 600,000… The German government still maintains that the figure of 2.0- 2.5 million expulsion deaths is correct”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flight_and_expulsion_of_Germans_%281944%E2%80%9350%29#Casualties

    It was an opportunity for ‘ethnic cleansing’ for those countries which had significant German minorities.The same goes the expulsion of the Hungarians from Slovakia.

  15. @Ovidiu

    There were murders of ethnic Germans in Poland and Bohemia, wikipedia is not evidence of their numbers.

    THere were none in Hungary.

    Greed was the common factor in both the 1944 and 1945 deportations. To steal the assets of the deportees.

  16. @tappach–“Greed was the common factor in both the 1944 and 1945 deportations”

    Sure, greed is always amongst the factors.However, the main factor (of those deportations and others, and of WW1 and WW2) was the growing inter-ethnic strife in Est-Europe during the 19th century as the idea of Nationalism and of “nation-state” became the main political ideology in Europe

    Orban is hypocritical, self-serving, with this would be “great loss”.It just serves him well to deflect the issue of the deportation of the Jews in 1941.
    If you want a realistic picture of the situation of the German minority in interwar Hungary :

    Click to access HSR_1984_1_009-022.pdf

  17. Here is another thought.

    Orban did not commemorate the liberation of the Pest ghetto at all on January 18.

    But he gave a speech, on location, about the expulsion of Germans on January 19.

    He is preparing the ground for a coalition with Jobbik.

  18. tappanch :
    Here is another thought.
    Orban did not commemorate the liberation of the Pest ghetto at all on January 18.
    But he gave a speech, on location, about the expulsion of Germans on January 19.
    He is preparing the ground for a coalition with Jobbik.

    Precisely. One must carefully sift Orban’s actions to determine, which (if any) of his words are true.

    Also, the sneaky Felcsutian loves to prepare the background ‘necessity’ for his desired action:
    thus, certain of his actions have prepared his party for a minority (as opposed to a ‘majority’) win so that he will be ‘forced’ to make a coalition with Jobbik. Of course, all along, he wanted Jobbik in the government.

    I must say, I can’t think of another instance (or country, on the planet) where Parliamentary
    System has been so abused as it has been in Hungary. And the so-called right-wing intelligentsia march proudly beside this development–truly disgusting.

  19. There are multiple themes evolving in this discussion. One is the role of the US in relationship to the Orban government as it relates to Hungarian/Russian deals for the reactor. I have been watching trading of Fidelity emerging market debt funds which holds about 10% of Hungary’s bonds. There is no indication that the reactor deal is seen as an economic disaster, the fund is totally stable. If Hungary produces more energy than it needs the price will drop which is all good for companies contemplating production in Hungary.

    The American Jewish community, especially what is left of Hungarian Jews, is politically more concerned about the outright rise of fascist groups like the Jobbik than it is over Orban. (I know of no Jewish American cultural or religious community that has a Hungarian language program for its youth so the specific Hungarian nature of the Hungarian Jewish community is fading.) Orban’s authoritarian policies are in many ways more moderate than those in Israel opposing any Palestinian state, overwhelmingly the American Jewish community supports the idea that Israel is an ethnically specific state of the Jewish people and not a multi-ethnic society, such a perspective is not incomparable with the racial/nationalist perspectives of the Orban government, as long as outright fascists do not come to power. Such a perspective may be short sighted but it is what it is.

    Right now the big concern in Eastern Europe is the movement of Ukraine towards civil war over joining the EU. I have seen no statement supporting or opposing Ukrainian engagement with the EU, most US state department comments have focused on the rights of those demonstrating. I think there is a complex dance taking place in US thinking. On the one hand we still have NATO which is effectively an anti-Russian force and on the other hand Russia could be a very useful ally with the US in relation to China which the US military sees as a growing threat.

  20. Istvan :
    There are multiple themes evolving in this discussion. One is the role of the US in relationship to the Orban government as it relates to Hungarian/Russian deals for the reactor. I have been watching trading of Fidelity emerging market debt funds which holds about 10% of Hungary’s bonds. There is no indication that the reactor deal is seen as an economic disaster, the fund is totally stable. If Hungary produces more energy than it needs the price will drop which is all good for companies contemplating production in Hungary.
    The American Jewish community, especially what is left of Hungarian Jews, is politically more concerned about the outright rise of fascist groups like the Jobbik than it is over Orban. (I know of no Jewish American cultural or religious community that has a Hungarian language program for its youth so the specific Hungarian nature of the Hungarian Jewish community is fading.) Orban’s authoritarian policies are in many ways more moderate than those in Israel opposing any Palestinian state, overwhelmingly the American Jewish community supports the idea that Israel is an ethnically specific state of the Jewish people and not a multi-ethnic society, such a perspective is not incomparable with the racial/nationalist perspectives of the Orban government, as long as outright fascists do not come to power. Such a perspective may be short sighted but it is what it is.
    Right now the big concern in Eastern Europe is the movement of Ukraine towards civil war over joining the EU. I have seen no statement supporting or opposing Ukrainian engagement with the EU, most US state department comments have focused on the rights of those demonstrating. I think there is a complex dance taking place in US thinking. On the one hand we still have NATO which is effectively an anti-Russian force and on the other hand Russia could be a very useful ally with the US in relation to China which the US military sees as a growing threat.

    The ‘great fears’ of powers like the US is often hidden: few realize that the US’s great fear is the power–political and economic–of a strong, stable, and united Europe. In this way, the nato bombing of Serbia did its share to destabilize Europe in the 1990s. And, to a degree,
    the US is willing to entertain the interference of Russia through its proxy (Hungary) to do the same.

    As far as military fears, the Russians are much more afraid of China than the Americans.

    And, as for this statement of yours:

    “…Orban’s authoritarian policies are in many ways more moderate than those in Israel opposing any Palestinian state, overwhelmingly the American Jewish community supports the idea that Israel is an ethnically specific state of the Jewish people and not a multi-ethnic society…”

    Note that you have confused opposition to the Palestinian state with pure ethnicity within Israel. Arabs within Israel, as well as other peoples, have the same rights as Israelis. Only the extreme right-wing Hasids pretend that the country is only for jews. But in any case,
    I find it objectionable that you would in any shape or form present Orban’s deceptive
    policies as being superior to Israel’s.

  21. tappanch: and boy was he right. No one will ever catch Simicska. He will only get more powerful.

    And indeed Orban is, as we speak, preparing plans to get along with Jobbik (btw huge supporters of Paks II and building of Bős-Nagymaros, Hungarian-Russian relations will be better than anytime since Rákosi) should circumstances dictate it.

    Fasten your seat belts, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride. Mark my words.

  22. “Only the extreme right-wing Hasids pretend that the country is only for jews.”

    That’s clearly not true. Israel was founded as the “jewish state”, and not as a homeland for palestinians arabs or others. If you do a google search for “jewish state” you find about 100 times more results than “extreme right-wing Hasids” could produce.

    You are very misinformed if you think this is not an important question within Israel. The whole “right of return” issue centers around this and why it can never be allowed.

  23. @tappanch

    “Greed was the common factor in both the 1944 and 1945 deportations. To steal the assets of the deportees.”

    I know this is Götz Aly’s theory (he is a German historian). And in Berlin the government wanted ALL people out of certain streets (most of these people happened to be Jews) because they wanted to built gigantic boulevards for the new capital “Germania”. But generally speaking behind the “measures” against the Jews taken by Horthy and Hitler was the ideological will to marginalise them or to get rid of them altogether. The plundering of their belongings – by their neighbours, mostly – was a welcome side-effect. But as far as I know Eichmann was not accused of having enriched himself.

  24. @Ovidiu

    Vae victis! Don’t forget: The Germans had started the war, and many a country joined them. But only the Germans seem to remember. At least those expelled or displaced had a country to go to – whatever the miserable circumstances.

    And yes, I find the Benes decrees despicable.

    BTW, over the years the number of refugees seems to grow everywhere – either because nobody dies and they multiply (Palestinians) or because of the Laws of Mendel (Sudeten Germans).

  25. @tappanch

    “He is preparing the ground for a coalition with Jobbik.”

    Jobbik developed out of the civic circles which Orbán had founded everywhere after he lost the elections in 2002. But will he be able to form a coalition with them?

    Perhaps nowadays nothing is unthinkable…

  26. In the constitution of the state of Israel it is called a Jewish state,even though it grants citizenship to non-Jews. The majority of the American Jewish Community supports the basic idea of the Jewish character of the State and opposes a Palestinian state that would include a significant part of the west bank. The policies of the current right wing government I Israel and Orban are not too dissimilar, both support the promotion of religion I the context of state policies.

  27. Before the Putin-Orban deal, the Russian Foreign Ministry has criticized the human rights of Hungary (as well as the human rights of other EU countries)

    http://t.co/LFraNS5wKw

    Please notice, the translation has not changed the Cyrillic order of the countries, so Hungary is located after letter B, just after UK.

  28. @Minusio–BTW, over the years the number of refugees seems to grow everywhere – either because nobody dies and they multiply (Palestinians) or because of the Laws of Mendel (Sudeten Germans).

    Yes, that’s why nobody wants them.For instance, one of main reasons of the vicious Lebanese Civil War(1975 to 1990, ~120 000 dead, ~ 1 million left the country) was that the establishment of the state of Israel resulted in displacement of a hundreds of thousand Palestinian refugees to Lebanon.To their number was added other Palestinians which were expelled in 1970 to Lebanon from Jordan (Jordan being were they initially found refuge in 1948).This displacement changed the demographic balance in Lebanon and undermined the dominant political position of the Christian Maronites.The tensions (after years of friction and reciprocal intensification of hatred) erupted in 1975 in open fight between the Christians Maronites and the Palestinians and then escalated in a full blown civil war in Lebanon.

  29. Minusio :
    @tappanch
    “Greed was the common factor in both the 1944 and 1945 deportations. To steal the assets of the deportees.”
    I know this is Götz Aly’s theory (he is a German historian). And in Berlin the government wanted ALL people out of certain streets (most of these people happened to be Jews) because they wanted to built gigantic boulevards for the new capital “Germania”. But generally speaking behind the “measures” against the Jews taken by Horthy and Hitler was the ideological will to marginalise them or to get rid of them altogether. The plundering of their belongings – by their neighbours, mostly – was a welcome side-effect. But as far as I know Eichmann was not accused of having enriched himself.

    Even tenants of a global analysis framework (for instance, Michael Mann in his Dark Side of Democracy) acknowledge that there are always multiple factors involved in the conception and perpetration of modern ethnic cleansing.

    The main problem I see in Szakaly’s initial remarks about Aug. 41 (a ‘police action against aliens’) is the strange feeling that they are made at the same time Hungary, again, seems to suffer from ‘citizenship frenzy’. Naturally, giving away hundreds of thousands of Hungarian passports and easy voting privileges in peace time doesn’t have the same dangerous consequences as depriving selected groups of people from their citizenship in war time.

    Nevertheless, both actions are performed in the name of a perverted notion of equality – according to which some are clearly considered more equal than others.

  30. Re the Sudeten Germans and the Schwabs:

    The big difference to other refugees is, that almost everybody has adjusted to the good life in Germany – most just return as tourists to their old towns, if at all.

    It’s just a very, very small number who want their old possessions back.

    I know a few and they have absolutely no ambition on their countries of origin – actually my father also came from Danzig which is now a part of Poland and married a Schwab girl on the Neckar river, but never thought about returning …

  31. “The new Hungarian authorities of Carpatho-Ruthenia, which was occupied in 1939, were bothered by more than one element of the presence of the Jews: they outnumbered the Hungarians; a large part of the community consisted of the conservative, religious, orthodox Jews despised by the new rulers; and there were many foreign refugees among them. The thought of deporting the poor, rural Jewry occurred to the government commissioner of Carpatho-Ruthenia, Miklós Kozma, already in the fall of 1940.[1] In the winter of 1940-1941 in the framework of arbitrary “cleaning” actions, Jewish families were driven across the Soviet and Romanian borders at some places by the Hungarian civilian and military authorities.[2]
    The next spring Hungarian authorities expelled plenty of Serb inhabitants from the re-annexed Délvidék (Southern Provinces), since they considered them hostile
    [between 25,000 and 60,000 of them, mostly to Serbia]
    Meanwhile Kozma carried on planning to deport the rural Jews. A possibility for that opened up in the summer when Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union. Leaders of the army, the public administration of Carpatho-Ruthenia and some officials of KEOKH supposed that under the chaotic circumstances of war they could deport the unwanted Jews to no man’s land. Kozma gained the approval of Prime Minister László Bárdossy, Minister of the Interior Lajos Keresztes-Fischer and also Regent Miklós Horthy. The round-up of the “stateless” Jews (i.e., those who were not holding Hungarian citizenship) and the Jews with “unsettled citizenship” commenced in July.”

    http://degob.org/index.php?showarticle=2019

  32. @Ovidiu

    “Jordan being were they initially found refuge in 1948”

    Some remarks:

    In 1948 Jordan conquered the largest part of Palestine (the West Bank) that used to be British mandate. I have seen the chicken pens in which Palestinians were held near Jericho until 1967 when only a few Palestinians lived in the Kingdom of Jordan proper.

    When the PLO which had retreated to Transjordania in 1967 threatened to take over the Kingdom of Jordan, the latter reacted with a vengeance. During the Black September in 1970-71, thousands of Palestinians fled to Lebanon, not hundreds of thousands.

    Most conflicts in Lebanon seem to run along the lines of religious affiliation, though.

  33. Istvan :
    In the constitution of the state of Israel it is called a Jewish state,even though it grants citizenship to non-Jews. The majority of the American Jewish Community supports the basic idea of the Jewish character of the State and opposes a Palestinian state that would include a significant part of the west bank. The policies of the current right wing government I Israel and Orban are not too dissimilar, both support the promotion of religion I the context of state policies.

    Lets see the facts. When a few Jews tried to enter with the help of Hungarian smugglers Hungary in 1942 they were cought and sent back to their certain death and the “Christian” Györi Nemzeti Hirlap was not only happy about that but made fun of those Jews.
    Had a Jewish state existed, the Holocaust could most probably not taken place.Let us remember, how most countries of the world refused at the Evian conference (July 1938) to let Jews flee to their territory.Soon after the Holocaust the British foreign secretary Ernest Bevin critizised the supposed Jewish tendency “to get too much at the head of the Queue” in demanding help.
    “Is it ‘getting too much to the head of the queue’ if, after the slaughter of six million Jews, the remnant of a million-and-a-half appeal for shelter in their homeland?”

    I suggest to stop discussion about Israels policy but return to Hungary, to the massive government sponsored rewriting of history. Let us stick to subject matter.

  34. @Minusio–“until 1967 when only a few Palestinians lived in the Kingdom of Jordan proper”–

    Not “few”, in 1950 -at the time of annexation of West-Bank by Jordan there were already 400 000 Palestinian refugees Est of Jordan (i.e. Kingdom of Jordan proper).

    Anyway, my point was to underline how such such waves of refugees lead to conflict.That happened in Jordan too albeit they (jordanians and palestinians) were Sunni-Muslim both.

  35. @Pfeifer “return to Hungary, to the massive government sponsored rewriting of history”

    What to say more since nothing as yet happened.Szakály has not resigned and the occupation-monument has not been cancelled.
    One even wonders “why now ?”, wonders whether Orban actually does this because he wants a conflict with Mazsihisz in order to collect the votes of the die-hard anti-semites.

  36. Ovidiu :
    @Pfeifer “return to Hungary, to the massive government sponsored rewriting of history”
    What to say more since nothing as yet happened.Szakály has not resigned and the occupation-monument has not been cancelled.
    One even wonders “why now ?”, wonders whether Orban actually does this because he wants a conflict with Mazsihisz in order to collect the votes of the die-hard anti-semites.

    Ovidiu I am not sure. Orbán believes that he can throw sand into the eyes of Jews and of the West by showing those building and at the same time to get the votes of Jobbik sympathizers.
    But if he has to choose, for him it is more important to get those votes.
    I guess he is going to break his word, that he will not form a coalition with Jobbik, if the results of the election will not allow him to form a Fidesz-KDNP government. He seems not to have problems with the ideology of Jobbik.

  37. @Ovidiu

    “…my point was to underline how such waves of refugees lead to conflict.That happened in Jordan too albeit they (jordanians and palestinians) were Sunni-Muslim both.”

    It also sheds a light on the unwillingness of the host countries to integrate the Palestinians who were originally no religious fanatics (and are mostly still not). This accusation has also been leveled against UNWRA. There were too many (varying) interests involved on all sides to keep the conflict boiling. Paradoxically, the Palestinians who didn’t live in refugee camps enjoyed a fairly high esteem in Arab countries – until 1991 when they sided with Iraq which had just invaded Kuwait.

  38. I just switched to Szeles’s television channel for a minute. (Oligarch Szeles is Orban’s friend) The infamous Szaniszlo was telling his viewers:

    “Aren’t the members of this community [Mazsihisz, the Jewish community] ashamed of themselves? (for criticising Szakaly)
    THey sponsored Hitler too. […]The Jews do not have any morals against the poor Palestinian people either. Their aim is to grab the Carpathian basin”

    Seriously, genuine Nazi talk at prime time.

  39. The first problem is that Mazsihisz is “aghast and finds incomprehensible the relativization of the Holocaust by the “Veritas” Institute established by the Hungarian government.” They should understand it by now and if they don’t then they are either incompetent or in bed with that government.

    Asking for the resignation of Szakály means that Mazsihisz finds the existence of “Veritas” legitimate. Above mentioned so-called historian is only a political activist accomplishing what his mandate is. The problem is the mandate.

    How about reacting to that and asking the dismissal of the nazi propaganda organization that is disguised as a research institute?

  40. I would like to complain to the EU about Orban’s new decree restricting political advertising
    before the election.

    Which commissioner should I write to?

  41. The democratic parties announced their unity a week ago.
    I have not heard Mesterhazy since then. Two months left only before the election!

  42. @tappanch

    This is also my main criticism: This opposition alliance behaves in a very unprofessional – almost apolitical – way. They should throw a new scandal, a new topic, a new demand, a new blueprint on the political market every week, be present in all media they can reach, in the streets, abroad, everywhere, all the time, relentlessly.

    Instead we hear of them once a month about what they have to say about each other. That’s not the way to get anywhere. It’s pathetic.

  43. tappanch :
    I would like to complain to the EU about Orban’s new decree restricting political advertising
    before the election.
    Which commissioner should I write to?

    Viviane Reding, Justice commission of EU

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